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Amherst jail official: Inmate died of 'apparent suicide'

Amherst jail official: Inmate died of 'apparent suicide'

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A man jailed in the Amherst County Adult Detention Center was found dead in his cell Wednesday.

Shawn Preston Jones, 43, of Augusta, was at the jail awaiting transfer to a Virginia Department of Corrections prison, according to a news release from Blue Ridge Regional Jail Authority Administrator Tim Trent.

Jones was found unresponsive in his cell at 12:36 p.m., and jail staff used CPR and a defibrillator on him, Trent said.

Amherst County rescue workers were called to the jail. Jones was pronounced dead at 1:39 p.m. “of an apparent suicide,” according to Trent.

Jones pleaded guilty in March to second-degree murder in Waynesboro and was sentenced to a little over 27 years in prison. In April, he was convicted of a probation violation in Amherst County and was sentenced to more time, records show.

The Office of the Chief Medical Examiner in Roanoke will perform an autopsy on him and the Amherst County Sheriff’s Office has launched an investigation into the death, according to Trent.

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